What is co-infection?
What is an STI?
How do I get an STI?
How will I know if I have an STI?
Is it easier to get an STI if I have HIV?
Will douching stop you from getting STIs?
Common Crotch Concerns
  Genital Herpes
  Genital Warts
Hepatitis C (HCV)
Tuberculosis (TB)

Genital Herpes

What is genital herpes? When you get genital herpes, the virus stays in your body permanently. People with this virus have sporadic outbreaks; usually the first outbreak is the worst! Outbreaks can be triggered by stress and fatigue.

How do I get it? Skin-to-skin contact and oral, genital, or anal contact with herpes virus (both active sores and skin that has the virus in it; when the sore is active, it is said to be shedding).

Symptoms: The first time you have an outbreak of herpes you usually will get a couple blister-like sores in your genital region. These may break, ooze and itch, but they will dry up in 7 to 10 days. Sometimes you will get ‘flu-like’ symptoms right before the outbreak (like headaches, fever, body aches and fatigue). Outbreaks following your first one will be less intense. Sometimes you will not even know you have had an outbreak.

Prevention: Always use a condom PLUS spermicide, since you can get genital herpes even when your partner doesn’t have an outbreak at the time you are having sex. Female condoms are even better then male condoms because they cover more of your genital surface.

Treatment: Outbreaks are treatable and there are medications that can make outbreaks less frequent. But there is no medication which “cures” you of herpes. In other words, once you get this virus, it is always in your system.. Talk to your doctor about the best options for treating and/or controlling herpes outbreaks.

Hospital for Sick Children University of Toronto Positive Youth Outreach CATIE